Gracie and I get home from work and day care every day around 4. As soon as we walk in the door (and sometimes in the car on the way home), she asks for a snack. Knowing that it will be at least an hour until we eat dinner, I give her something to nibble one.
In the past, Grace has enjoyed snacking on goldfish crackers or animal crackers. There’s nothing inherently wrong with either of those snacks, but I feel a little irresponsible feeding her a snack that is essentially, a handful of cookies. I don’t like that she’s developing a taste for salted and sweet foods.
I set out in my favorite grocery store to find some foods that were more nutritious but just as convenient.
Here’s what I came up with:
Gracie loves fruit, and she’ll eat almost any of it. Not long ago, she discovered pomegranates. That was wonderful for her; the berries inside are perfectly sized for a toddler bite. It was also wonderful for me; I peel once and she gets snacks for four or five days.
- Apple slices
- Grapes cut in half
- Orange or mandarin orange sections
- Chunks of watermelon or cantaloupe
Grace loves cheese. I have been buying it in a brick shape, and I cut off a slice or two for her to snack on. Perfect. I’ve also seen some individually wrapped cheese slices at Sam’s Club that are real cheese, like colby jack.
These don’t always go over well at my house, but they’re worth a try. I’ve tried carrot sticks, pepper sticks, green beans, and peas – both raw and cooked. They all make great toddler foods, though they require a little prep work ahead of time.
I make whole grain bread in my bread maker at home. A few cubes of bread with a sauce for dipping makes my daughter a fun (though messy) snack. Her favorite dipping sauces so far have been marinara sauce, apple butter, and ranch dressing.
Not a very long list, is it? What are your thoughts? Share your ideas for after school snacks in the comments.
Grace’s Kitchen Friends
Please join in Grace’s Kitchen Friends! To play along, all you have to do is fill out Mr. Linky below. (If Mr. Linky isn’t there, leave your link in the comments.) You can link up any post that talks about kids and food:
- feeding kids
- cooking with kids
- pretending about food
- food crafts
- and probably a lot of other kids and food things I can’t think of now.
I’m easy like that, Dear Reader. The only thing I ask is that you link back here to Grace’s Kitchen Friends in your post. I can’t wait to see what your kids are doing!
© 2009 – 2010, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.